Private Company Used To Monitor Opponents Of Gas Drilling In Pa

09.16.10 | FL News Team

(Harrisburg, PA)  --  The terrorism-threat monitoring system that has outraged Governor Ed Rendell for its reports on the plans of Pennsylvania activists and others required a private company to issue updates three times a week and perform research in three languages. That’s according to a document released Wednesday by the governor's office.

The two-page "proposal for a subscription service" by Institute of Terrorism Research and Response co-director Mike Perelman said his Philadelphia-based company would spend 56 hours a week looking into the security of the state's critical infrastructure, including research in English, Spanish and Arabic. It also said it would issue a monthly summary and provide instant alerts to the state Office of Homeland Security.

Perelman said in a brief phone interview that his company does not provide similar services to other governmental bodies. The institute describes itself as an American and Israeli nonprofit corporation that provides training, seminars and expertise in anti-terror strategy.

Josh Fox, director of the documentary "Gasland," said he was angry and stunned that a showing of his movie drew the notice of the monitors. He said people opposed to the shale drilling had previously told him they suspected they were being watched.